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Cost to county taxpayers when court defendents fail to appear: some $1 million


May 19, 2021

It costs Linn County taxpayers about $1,000 every time someone charged with a crime fails to appear in court, according to District Attorney Doug Marteeny.

And last year, that happened 949 times. It is the No. 1 issue on the Top 10 list of misdemeanors handled by the Linn County District Attorney’s Office.

“The number of people who fail to appear for court has risen drastically,” Marteeny said. “It is the highest I have ever seen. Once we get defendants to jail, they appear in court at a much higher rate.  Jail space and court docket speed are important factors that prevent a defen...

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